Choosing an email marketing platform is a big decision that can have a long-term impact on your business—and for some small business owners, the overwhelming number of choices (not to mention the learning curve of any new software!) can hold them back from building an email list at all. But trust us, that would be the biggest mistake you could make for your business.
We’ll warn you right now that as you’re evaluating different email platforms, you’ll likely be tempted to focus a lot of your attention on which platform has the prettiest email templates. This is understandable. But unless you have an e-commerce company and are selling a physical product online, the truth is that the visual aesthetics of your emails are not the most important factor.
For many of us, when it comes to wrapping gifts, the struggle is real. J.Crew Factory recognized this problem, and then created this email to serve as a solution for those incapable of pulling off a Pinterest-esque wrap job: gift cards. The email offers up two different says to pick up a gift card -- in store or online -- in an effort to avoid excluding anyone. 
Here's another great example from Litmus of animation being used to create more interesting email marketing design. Unlike static text, the swipe motion used to provide recipients with a look "under the hood" of their email tool is eye-catching and encourages you to take a deeper dive into the rest of the content. Not to mention the header does an excellent job of explicitly stating what this email is about.
However, with only a few simple templates and styles to choose from, the underwhelming visual impact of emails sent through ConvertKit make it a decidedly “function over form” option—that is, the back-end management and analytics that ConvertKit offers far outshines the experience of the end audience. So if sending beautiful or graphic-heavy emails is your highest priority, you should probably look elsewhere.
As far as I’m concerned, it’s a myth that you need to double opt-in all contacts. For example, if that requirement were turned on, I’m confident we would lose about 10% of our email subscribers. Not because they weren’t real people, but just because everyone is busy and emails can easily get buried. Part of the way I get around this is in using Wufoo forms and LeadPages, email addresses are directly imported into into our email marketing software via an API. This bypasses the normal double opt-in requirement. So even if we end up having some “fake” or mis-spelled contacts in our database, I’d rather have those AND a 10% larger list. Plus, if an email address bounces, it’s automatically cleaned from our database.

The low cost and relative ease of carrying out an email marketing campaign means that it is a tool that is accessible to almost any business. A small mechanic's shop can put together an email list and then send out coupons for oil changes or brake jobs. The scope and sophistication of these campaigns may not be as great as larger businesses, but that doesn't mean they won't be effective.
For Campaign Monitor customers, you can either manually upload an existing list (from an Excel file for instance) or you can connect your Campaign Monitor account to the tool where your customer data lives (such as your CRM, accounting, eCommerce tool, and hundreds of others) and automatically sync your customer information into your Campaign Monitor account.
Some people think email marketing is outdated, but they couldn’t be more wrong. Email marketing has been utilized since shortly after the birth of the Internet. It has evolved considerably since then and is still an incredibly useful marketing tool. In fact, many entrepreneurs argue that email marketing is more important now than ever before. There’s a good reason 85% of U.S. retailers consider email marketing one of the most effective customer acquisition tactics!

Brian. You talk about how all these variables matter in getting this article to rank #1 for “list building” and how competitors have way more links than you, but then you also consider your DA and your PA together, you have almost the highest score out of the top 10 rankings; and when you consider you are more topical authority, then that explains why Hugpages (all purpose site) is not ranking higher. Maybe its not all as complicated as you suggest.


So how do you build this list of “cold” contacts? If you’re a B2C business and your product is less than $50, you’re probably better off just using one of the other strategies on this list. If you’re a B2B business, this process is 10x easier because the average value of acquiring 1 client is substantially higher. To compile a target list of B2B contacts, start by Googling with specific search terms that will lead you to the websites of your target audience. For example, if you’re targeting US-based dentists, understand that you’re targeting a local business market and start by listing your top ten target cities. Then, match up the searches you make with each location. For instance:

And finally if you want to build optin forms that you can integrate with your website and which also integrates with GoToWebinar then I use and recommend LeadPages – and as a bonus they have their feature of LeadBoxes which can be used to enable people to opt in for your lead magnet e.g. a special report from within an article or blog post or on the side bar of your site.
I’ve always been a mailchimp user myself, and I have to say I really like their UI but I’m always open to new options. I’ve dabbled in a couple of the other email marketing providers like Pure360 – but find them so clunky and annoying to use (despite them looking really pretty and having great templates) that I always end up going back to good old mailchimp. I haven’t used GetResponse yet, I’ll give their free trial a shot :)
There is also a piece of legislation called the CAM-SPAM Act that includes a series of rules to curtail the transmission of spam. These rules include having a non-deceptive subject line, a method subscribers can use to easily unsubscribe from your email list, and your name and address at the end of all emails. As long as you adhere to the requirements of the CAM-SPAM Act, your emails should be spam-free!
Best Practices Calls to Action Coding Content Marketing Copywriting Customer Journey Customer Spotlight Data-Driven Marketing Deliverability Digital Marketing Email Automation Email Design Email Development Email List Email Marketing Email Templates Event Marketing Marketing Automation Metrics Personalization Segmentation Social Media Strategy Subject Line Testing Transactional Email
Affiliate marketing occurs when advertisers organize third parties to generate potential customers for them. Third-party affiliates receive payment based on sales generated through their promotion.[24]:22 Affiliate marketers generate traffic to offers from affiliate networks, and when the desired action is taken by the visitor, the affiliate earns a commission. These desired actions can be an email submission, a phone call, filling out an online form, or an online order being completed.
After its 2014 breakthrough on the back of a brilliant podcast marketing campaign, MailChimp is perhaps the most widely-used email marketing system for small businesses with an estimated 15 million+users. And it’s more than just a popularity contest winner. In a recent email marketing survey of 60 small business owners, it received rave reviews from its users.
The ad exchange puts the offer out for bid to demand-side platforms. Demand side platforms act on behalf of ad agencies, who sell ads which advertise brands. Demand side platforms thus have ads ready to display, and are searching for users to view them. Bidders get the information about the user ready to view the ad, and decide, based on that information, how much to offer to buy the ad space. According to the Internet Advertising Bureau, a demand side platform has 10 milliseconds to respond to an offer. The ad exchange picks the winning bid and informs both parties.
Hi Edith, thank you for commenting and updating us with your story. Website creation might sound difficult to some people, but come to think of it, it is really easy as pie. I know kids and elderly alike that have learned to use a website building software so quickly that it is just amazing. Producing multiple sites is than easy, even taking it a step further and starting services to build stores and web sites for others! Thank you for sharing Edith, Good Luck with all!
This is a very common practice, especially on the homepages of startups and companies that have a relatively young brand. The idea is that by leveraging the credibility and trust already built up by other brand names (i.e. press outlets) or authority figures you can build trust and authority faster to get a visitor to convert into a subscriber. In other words, this can mean

As we continue to further explain what is email marketing, we must also mention how it works best with other marketing efforts. As mentioned previously, email marketing works extremely well alongside social media marketing. You are able to cross-promote your company’s social media profiles on emails with buttons requesting that your email subscribers follow you. You can also use your social media profiles to gather an email list to use in your email marketing campaigns.

As with offline advertising, industry participants have undertaken numerous efforts to self-regulate and develop industry standards or codes of conduct. Several United States advertising industry organizations jointly published Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising based on standards proposed by the FTC in 2009.[109] European ad associations published a similar document in 2011.[110] Primary tenets of both documents include consumer control of data transfer to third parties, data security, and consent for collection of certain health and financial data.[109]:2–4 Neither framework, however, penalizes violators of the codes of conduct.[111]

That said, I think that a solid content strategy, effective promotion and a good understanding of your target audience and what kind of offers are likely to motivate them to share their contact info are absolutely essential to building and getting business value from your email list. Without those key components, the best tools in the world won’t get you very far.


This one is simple and marginally effective, but every little bit counts. In the by-line right below your blog posts, insert a link that visitors can click to sign-up for your newsletter. Here’s what I mean. That’s pretty much all there is to it, but a quick note… I’ve tested this with and without Lead Pages’ Lead Box feature. I found that the plain link that send visitors to a newsletter sign-up page converted at a much lower rate (might have been 0 actually) than when I used a Lead Box link instead.

If you’re just getting started in affiliate marketing don’t be intimidated by the seemingly daunting task of getting started with list building. All lists, regardless of size, were created one email address at at time.  One of the best ways to learn list building is to select a few affiliate marketers that you know and like and simply subscribe to their lists. You’ll quickly grasp what it’s all about.
SparkPost – SparkPost is a cloud-based email delivery service built on the Amazon Web Services platform. SparkPost's cloud API allows you to send transactional emails quickly. Developers at businesses of all sizes can send up to 100,000 emails a month for free and scale as the business grows and email programs become more sophisticated. sparkpost.com

That said, I think that a solid content strategy, effective promotion and a good understanding of your target audience and what kind of offers are likely to motivate them to share their contact info are absolutely essential to building and getting business value from your email list. Without those key components, the best tools in the world won’t get you very far.


Sometimes very little, sometimes a lot. Hubspot, for example, may charge 10-20X more than most email marketing tools but they offer a built-in landing page builder, social media marketing tool and much more. On the other hand, ActiveCampaign offers an enormous amount of value while remaining one of the most affordable email marketing tools on the market.
The huge advantage of email over social media is that prospects and customers are more likely to see an email than social media. Just posting something doesn't mean that everyone you want to see your message will see it. Your post might not even show up in your targets' social media streams. However, an email will sit in the inbox until it's read (or deleted). 
This powerhouse of a platform is for small businesses that are really serious about email marketing. By that, we mean businesses who want to run laser-targeted automations, and integrate their email with other key tools (such as CRM, website, online store, or support desk). With an inbuilt CRM, SMS distribution, and the ability to manage personalized Facebook ads and site messages, there’s very little that this US-based provider doesn’t do, so it’s an attractive option for marketers who want an all-in-one sales and marketing solution.
Robly – Robly's OpenGen technology starts with a regular email campaign send. OpenGen will then resend your campaign one to 10 days later, with a different subject line to those subscribers who didn't open the first campaign. The system also sends emails one at a time, at the moment subscribers are most likely to check their inboxes. The service features A/B testing, a pop-up widget to increase contacts and mobile-responsive templates. robly.com
Take the email below from Paperless Post, for example. I love the header of this email: It provides a clear CTA that includes a sense of urgency. Then, the subheader asks a question that forces recipients to think to themselves, "Wait, when is Mother's Day again? Did I buy Mom a card?" Below this copy, the simple grid design is both easy to scan and quite visually appealing. Each card picture is a CTA in and of itself -- click on any one of them, and you'll be taken to a purchase page.
Cleaning your CRM and keeping your customer and marketing lists updated is a huge pain. I have an automatic way to keep your lists clean: import them into Inlistio ( https://www.inlistio.com) and it will track their job changes and give you the best new email address (along with every past email address). It saves a ton of time and is very accurate.
But engaging with a new customer isn’t a one-and-done affair. That’s why you want the ability to create an automated email sequence that “indoctrinates” new subscribers to your brand through a series of emails in the week or so after they sign up. This is just one of many instances where email sequencing can be the most powerful tool in your brand’s email marketing toolbox—so make sure the platform you choose has strong sequencing functionality!
Note: This is the exact set up recording gear I used for my multiple 6-figure summit, List Building School and what most of my successful VSM students tend to use as well. I’ve since updated my own setup to up the quality 100 times at least, and as that’s more advanced and cost a few $1,000 I won’t go into it here (I do cover the exact tools and setup I use now in my premium flagship program Virtual Summit Mastery though).
It’s probably the world’s best-known (and loved) newsletter tool, and for a small business, MailChimp is definitely worthy of consideration. It comes with some with useful features, including automations, landing pages, A/B testing, and advanced reporting. You can also choose between a monthly plan, pay-as-you-go credits, or even a free plan (with 12,000 emails per month for up to 2,000 subscribers).
This consistent outreach translates into people more easily thinking of your business when they need your services. The key word here being, “consistent,” not, “irregular.” If you email your network once or twice a year and it’s only ever to promote your business, you’ll likely see very low engagement. There’s not much in it for them, only for you.
Benchmark offers both free and paid plans. Its plans and packages can fit into the budget of almost any small business. All plans, including the free plan, come with its drag-and-drop editor, responsive templates, signup forms, basic drip campaigns, email delivery management, Google Analytics tracking, list management, contact segmentation, and list hygiene.
Here’s a great example I can give you for step 1. I was curious to figure out which traffic source was sending us the highest converting traffic. And when I say “converting” I mean, obviously, converting from a visitor to an email subscriber. My theory was that the answer would be organic traffic from Google… But I was 100% wrong. No literally, I was 100% wrong because traffic coming into our site from LinkedIn converted 100% better (or twice as well) as Google. So in this example, to “scale that peak” of our highest converting traffic source, I need to figure out a way for use to grow our inbound traffic coming from LinkedIn. Here’s another example, not related to email but still relevant… I found our that our audience really likes articles that include multiple forms of media (video, images, and text). So I did more of those and as a result we grew our traffic as a result of more visitors sharing our articles. Simple, right? Of course, it goes without saying that I put significant effort into making sure the articles were good. So to review, find out which tactics or channels convert best and then double down on each one to grow your email list. If you’re curious to see the full interview where Noah mentions this concept, I’ve embedded the video below.
1: Email marketing features – You can assume that all of the tools in this article offer all of the features you’d expect (pre-built email templates, multiple contact lists, a visual email campaign builder). But some go above and beyond with email A/B testing, automatic send-time optimisation (to maximise your open rates) and little extras like support for inserting emojis into subject lines.
The benefits of email marketing for small businesses are not always obvious. Email marketing is being used by thousands of organizations to promote their businesses and to grow revenue. If you’re on the fence about email or overwhelmed with information, we want to help you get started. Here are five benefits of email marketing for small businesses.
Email marketing is a simple and proven strategy to promote your business. It attracts new customers and helps maintain close relationships with loyal customers. There's a long list of email marketing services available today and most operate at relatively low prices, with packages to fit every business size and need. It's just a matter of determining which features and tools you need and how much you're willing to spend.
Display advertising conveys its advertising message visually using text, logos, animations, videos, photographs, or other graphics. Display advertisers frequently target users with particular traits to increase the ads' effect. Online advertisers (typically through their ad servers) often use cookies, which are unique identifiers of specific computers, to decide which ads to serve to a particular consumer. Cookies can track whether a user left a page without buying anything, so the advertiser can later retarget the user with ads from the site the user visited.[25]
Salesforce – Salesforce offers email marketing services with drag-and-drop content tools, real-time tracking, geographical reporting, A/B testing, automation, and the ability to easily scale campaigns up or down. Salesforce also offers Pardot, a B2B email marketing solution. salesforce.com/products/marketing-cloud/channels/email-marketing-solutions
Campaign Monitor – Campaign Monitor is email marketing software for businesses of all sizes that includes a drag-and-drop email builder, mobile-ready templates, free image hosting, A/B testing, social sharing, segmentation, triggered messaging, personalized content, inbox previews, spam testing, message analytics and contact management tools. campaignmonitor.com
When people talk about email marketing, lots of them forget to mention transactional emails. These are the automated emails you get in your inbox after taking a certain action on a website. This could be anything from filling out a form, to purchasing a product, to updating you on the progress of your order. Often, these are plain text emails that marketers set and forget.
Even if at first you do not succeed, the relaxing acoustic soundtrack and bright art style in this bridge building game will make you feel somewhat better about the watery graves you have just made for your poor passengers – as we found in our Poly Bridge review. With 24 challenges in the base version and hundreds more on Steam Workshop, Poly Bridge will keep you entertained for hours.
The ethical bribe is not only intended to build your email list but also your credibility too. It’s your opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge in your niche and connect with your audience on a personal level. For this site I use The Super Affiliate Handbook. On that note, if you’re not already on my list please click here and go get this valuable free report now.
“This has by far been the best return on investment I’ve ever seen. This has opened up another door for revenue to come in. My website has turned into my best sales rep. The company markets itself! My account manager presents all the information in a way that I can understand. She always takes my calls. She responds to my emails in a timely fashion. She helps me come up with new ideas. She is outstanding! Blue Corona provides results....”

Email marketing may be a great way to reach your current and past customers and influence direct conversions, but social media can also be a valuable tactic for advertising your holiday promotions. Overall, social media channels have a much higher engagement rate than email marketing – consumers are more likely to share social media content from brands than they are email content.
2) Leadshare: I am pretty active at Slideshare and Leadshare helps me generate additional leads from my presentations on any topic. I can then import them into the corresponding Mailchimp list quite easily (You need to explain what they are subscribing to right within the Leadshare form)! Also, Leadshare is free for everyone (since Slideshare discontinued its free offering).

I talked about generic exit-detection popups in an earlier point, but now let’s talk about a more advanced version of that email collection strategy. To review: Exit detection popups are a “smarter” form of email capture popup. It appears when it detects that the mouse from a visitor is moving off the page, towards the top, and he or she is probably about to hit the back button or type in a new web address (example below) There are a number of free options for this, but none of them work as well as the paid exit-detection popups that are out there. I personally use and recommend Optin Monster which costs $199. The biggest benefits to using something like Optin Monster is that you can A/B test your pop-ups AND set specific popups to appear on specific pages.  So, creating an exit-intent popup is a macro optimization you can make to your site, where as creating page-specific exit pop-ups is a micro optimization which leads to higher conversion rates as that individual pages level. Why? Well, think about it. If you’re reading an article about, say, building your email list and you see either
Elite Email – The Elite Email cloud-based platform allows organizations of all sizes to build and grow their mailing lists, create emails, and track results with detailed reports and analytics. The software requires nothing to download or install. With Elite Email, businesses can choose from more than 400 customizable templates to create email newsletters, promotions, announcements and coupons. eliteemail.com
Talk Fusion – Talk Fusion is an all-in-one video marketing solution that features video email, video newsletters and sign-up forms. Talk Fusion's products run on both PC and Mac operating systems and can be viewed by users on any internet-capable device. In addition, you can create video emails on iPhone, iPad and Android devices using the Fusion on the Go mobile app. For video emails, you just choose a template, record or upload a video, and send. The service also includes comprehensive, real-time reports that tell you who opens and reads your emails, what links they clicked, and if they forwarded the email. talkfusion.com
One other advantage that doing email list promotions like this, whether you’re doing it as a JV webinar partnership or as a marketing alliance, is that you have the option of doing a 1-click optin. This is especially easy if you have a LeadPages or Infusionsoft account. But you can do something similar using Mailchimp and other basic email marketing programs using the “mail merge” feature. For instance:
As advertisers have shifted more and more of their efforts online, they have tried to find ways to use the strategies developed in print advertising in new online environments. Most of the traffic once handled by the postal service now happens over email, creating a new method of direct marketing. Today, the average marketer sends 64 emails to their customers every year.

Email marketing is a powerful way to turn leads into customers and customers into loyal brand evangelists. This seems to me the right definition of Email Marketing. Thanks a lot for sharing the good guidelines and tips for a successful Email Marketing. I got some so important tips from your post. I do hope it will help me a lot. For good ROI, Email marketing is so powerful digital marketing strategy. For this reason, I love email marketing very much. I think Investing in email marketing is sure worth it — as long as you do it right.
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